SEO in 2019
SEO agencies are always trying to stay ahead of Google updates and changes, and as we move towards a future of AI, 360 Data and UX led campaigns - what can be expected from SEO in 2019?
Website speed and performance has always been important, and load times should always be targeted at below 2 seconds. What's more, the delivery of assets from the server need to be smooth and clear for web crawlers to identify ease of understanding and use.
A core element of this is server wait time. The longer a server takes to respond to a request from a user, or web crawler, the higher chance they'll move away from your site before it even loads. If this keeps happening, particularly from a crawl perspective, a website will lose rankings.
Key areas to focus on here are hosting, delivery of HTML code and web structure (both from a folder/page and crawl map perspectives).
Security - SSL and HTTPS
Much has been made of the 'little green padlock' over the last 12 months and it essential that web owners and SEO agencies work together to acheive a seamless transition to HTTPS by the year end. Ecommerce sites and payments portals which already have HTTPS attached to them are no longer going to be good enough to maintain user and crawler trust.
The focus on security from Google, and the ongoing increases in ranking weight this has, means that all websites should be HTTPS as standard ASAP.
Upon setting up a new SSL certificate ensure that your SEO agency work on redirects, Htaccess rules and updates to internal content - this will mean maintaining rankings long term and if carried out correctly removes the risk of dropping traffic or leads into the business.
SEO, PR and branding have all previously sat seperately from each other. However, core algorithm updates which allow web crawlers to better understand web reputation, branding and how a website meets user intent means SEO should sit alongside marketing strategies for a business, not as a bolt on.
Marketing in 2019 is likely to be driven by SEO data - keyword research, buying trends, multi-channel conversions - that allow everybody in the business to make informed decisions on marketing and business metrics.
What's more, with SEO data at the core of the work, and agencies using sophisticated software to deliver campaigns, the ROI of SEO has never been greater (and potentially, never been more important either).
Schema and JSON
We've written extensively on Schema/JSON in the past as championing manual, extensive and well structured data is going to be essential to campaign success in 2019.
While it is possible for web owners to use pre-built templates, the strength of data comes through an SEO agency and web development team working in tandem to improve how structured data is read and interpreted by search engines.
New focuses for this will be people, services and FAQ.